Black Entertainment : The History Of R & B

Discussion in 'Black Entertainment' started by AHMOSE, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. AHMOSE

    AHMOSE Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Rhythm and blues, also known as R & B, is a catchall phrase used to describe several styles of music produced by African-American musicians and intended mainly for an African-American audience. The term came into vogue during the 1940's as an alternative to the term race music. At this time, the main practitioners of R & B were small combos that often added jazz and blues elements to the popular songs of the day.

    The presence of a strong dance rhythm distinguished the work of R & B artists from the styles played by blues and jazz musicians. Rhythm and blues also had a distinctly urban style, reflecting the desire of many young African-Americans to distance themselves from the rural associations of the traditional blues. Successful performers emerging from this tradition included the saxophonist and band leader Louis Jordan and "blues shouters" such as Big Joe Turner, La Vern Baker, Ruth Brown, Big Mama Thornton, and Wynonie Harris.

    One of the most important features of R & B was the development of groups singing the harmony style that came to be known as "doo-wop" - Sonny Til and the Orioles led the way, enjoying a nationwide R & B hit with "It's Too Soon To Know" in 1948. As rock 'n' roll became popular during the 1950's - largely the result of white singers covering songs by R & B performers - little distinction was made between rock 'n' roll and R & B. At this point, leading African-American R & B performers such as Chuck Berry and Fats Domino were considered rock 'n' roll stars, sharing the same niche as white musicians such as Bill Haley and Elvis Presley.

    With the emergence of the Motown phenomenon and the Memphis soul sound during the 1960's (music exemplified by the The Supremes, The Temptations, Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, and other soul groups and singers), however, it was once again possible to distinguish a uniquely African-American music style by calling it R & B. That distinction continues to the made, even though many African-American R & B stars have enjoyed enormous success with general rock 'n' roll audiences. The 1960's, '70's, and 80's also saw the development of new styles of R & B, including funk and disco.

    Source: African American Desk Reference
     
  2. anAfrican

    anAfrican Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    oh, i do miss this sound!!! it just seems to me that there was so much more "soul" in it!

    "they" give us crap all the time, but they just love to latch on to all we do!

    who's doing R&B today?
     
  3. Deepvoice

    Deepvoice Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I always thought that R&B was the term they gave to black rock n' roll musicians, so to tell who is who. I thought black people invented rock n' roll.
     
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